This is a re-do. I submitted basically the same piece for Memorial Day.
When I was young, I cut my teeth on WWII movies where war was glorified. John Wayne in The Green Berets made me zealous for militarism.
On 11/11/11 I remember — again — the day I learned that war was not the glorified world of the movies. The very first funeral I ever attended was for a son of Apache, Oklahoma. PFC James McClure was killed on May 2, 1967, the day before my 11th birthday. He was 19.
Once again I reflect. I recall the message I delivered to an over-flow crowd of mourners in the early spring of 2008. The governor of Oklahoma sat on the front row, along with a young widow and her toddler son, Gage. As I stood before the men and women gathered at that funeral, I found myself confronted with the very real issues of honor, duty, courage, and sacrifice that Veterans Day represents.
The following is the text from that day’s message. Continue reading 11/11/11 I Hate War